Scriptures for September 20th: Proverbs 31:10-31; Psalm 1, James 3:13-4:3, 7-8a,
Unlike Paul who writes to a specific congregation about a specific issue, James writes to all Christians in general. This week we are reminded that there is always an internal battle within us between what is right and what it wrong. We are always having to ballet between doing what the Bible says and doing what the world says. When we listen to the bible, we get a message of peace, gentleness, willingness, and righteousness. When we listen to the world we get a message of envy and self ambition. How can we possibly choose between to the two sets of values?
Jesus continues to talk to the disciples about death, about his death. This is a hard conversation for anyone to talk about. But Jesus knows that when he dies, their work just begins. And he has a lot to teach them before that point in life comes. He disciples are fighting about who is the greatest among them. Once again Jesus helps them understand that greatness in the kingdom of God is not like greatness in the world. Children are the greatest in the kingdom of God, Are they the greatest in the church?
Questions: Who is not welcome in our churches? What barriers prevent them from coming? What barriers prevent us from realizing that they are excluded? How do we get in touch with our own jealousy and anger and self ambition? When we see it, what do we do about it?